I am determined to make some marmalade. I got a sudden yen for it last weekend while I was toasting up some English muffins, realizing that we really didn't have much in the way of jellies or jams to spread on toasted baked goods. I actually did make do with a bit of Honey Citron "tea" mix
as it is very marmalade-esque, and it was pretty nice, but I know I can make some marmalade myself.
I then remembered seeing marmalade recipes using kumquats, which are curiously delicious fruits with tart juice/flesh and sweet rinds. I ran out and snagged some from the grocery store, and looked about for recipes. However, the internet offers some different methods for kumquat marmalade, mostly having to do with the prep of the fruits themselves. Perhaps I'm being obtuse, but the instruction to "remove segments" from kumquats seems silly - they're ridiculously small - so recipes advising to simply slice thinly win my vote. Other advice often included saving the seeds and any pith, so that it can be gathered and tied in a cheesecloth bundle to infuse with the rest of the sliced fruit and juice. The Joy of Cooking
does not advise this step, but pectin is derived from these parts of citrus fruits, so perhaps it is valid. I still think a scientific experiment would be useful (though I think I will save that for a bigger batch).
So this weekend I am definitely making some kumquat marmalade. It's a long process; the fruit must soak in water to extract the pectin for about a full day before proceeding with the standard jam/preserve process. I just need to make sure I end up with a proper 'lade, rather than a citrusy syrup (which I'm sure would still be delicious, but harder to keep on a toast slice).
While referencing the Joy of Cooking, I noticed another recipe that sounded intriguing: Lime Marmalade. I looooove limes. The smell of a freshly sliced lime is definitely in my top 5 sensory experiences. And, limes are usually cheap and readily available in most markets here, especially H-Mart. I'm intrigued to try the recipe out, though I'm a bit confused with the instruction to essentially discard the peel of the limes (and extra lemons) called for in the ingredients. The finely sliced citrus peels are, to my mind, the characteristic feature of a marmalade. So, why eliminate them? At the least I would expect the zest to be sliced and used, if not the pithy bits. The internet yields some recipes that call for this, but also many that call simply for juicing the limes, removing the remaining pulp, and slicing up the rinds. Well, anyhow... I think it would be interesting to make a ginger-lime marmalade. Eventually.